Published on - 10/24/2005
Special Hindu pujas, Prayer sessions of Islamic and Catholic faiths, attended by large numbers of Senior Army Officers and Other Ranks were among a series of religious observances that preceded the forthcoming 56th Anniversary celebrations of the Sri Lanka Army and its Army Day (10th October).
Commemorative ceremonies of Buddhist denomination at Anuradhapura Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi kicked the proceedings off on 01st October 2005. Army Day celebrations consist of colorful military parades, hospital visits, all night Pirith chanting ceremonies, alms-giving ceremonies, distribution of gift parcels, etc. Commander of the Army is also to address his staff adding significance to the occasion.
At most sacred Davatagaha Jumma Mosque in Colombo 7, Islamic prayer sessions were observed on Thursday (06) morning with participation of Commander of the Army Lieutenant General Shantha Kottegoda and a gathering of senior officers including Chief of Staff Major General Sarath Fonseka, Director General, General Staff Major General Nanda Mallawaarachchi, Master General Ordinance Major General Basil Peiris, Overall Command for Colombo Major General P. Chandrawansa, Adjutant General Major General W. U. B Edirisinghe and Director of Psychological Operations Brigadier A .S. M . Saheer. Many devotees also joined the sessions.
Maulavi Kari Faizal Hassen invoked blessings on the Army after symbolically accepting the Army Flag from the Army Commander as other assistant Maulasis too joined the prayer sessions on this special occasion. The brief religious performance ended after sprinkling holy water.
A special holy mass of Catholic faith was also observed at Galle Face Christ Church on Thursday (6) evening graced by Lt. General Shantha Kottegoda, Commander of the Army. Divine service conducted by Rev Father D. Deshapriya was also attended by a large gathering of Senior Officers including Chief of Staff Major General Sarath Fonseka where the Army Flag was blessed.
Meanwhile, Hindu religious observances in connection with Army anniversary celebrations were performed at Captain Gardens Hindu Kovil on Tuesday (04). Chief of Staff Major General Sarath Fonseka, accompanied by a large gathering of Senior Army Officers and Other Ranks participated in it.